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Clowe suspended two games after line change is declared legal

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Having already served one game of the suspension, Ryane Clowe will only miss tomorrow night's contest against the Colorado Avalanche.

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Well, that could have gone a lot worse for Ryane Clowe and the San Jose Sharks. After Clowe was suspended indefinitely by the NHL on Saturday for an alleged illegal line change prior to engaging Andrew Shaw in retaliation for his hit on Joe Pavelski the night before, it was speculated Clowe could be dealt as much as a ten-game ban.

Instead, presumably thanks to some shrewd legal maneuvering by the team, Brendan Shanahan concluded earlier today that Clowe was already heading on the ice as part of a legal line change before the incident with Shaw occurred. As a result, he'll only receive a two-game suspension. To be entirely honest, the explanation given seems plausible enough. Clowe is already on his feet with Pavelski, who was at the end of a minute-long shift, skating towards the bench. Here's the full video documentation:


With Clowe having already been held out of Saturday's game in Dallas, he'll be eligible to return to the Sharks' lineup on Thursday when they host the Red Wings. In the meantime, with Martin Havlat and Tommy Wingels not skating this morning, it's entirely possible San Jose's best natural right wing tomorrow will be Adam Burish. Welp.